The first "Grind" was just a ride of 8 or 9 friends and was called the Canada Day 100. We rode from our house in Gibsons to the end of Mercer Road and back. When we returned we had a barbeque in the neighbors back yard. It was conceived simply as a one-time event. However, those friends coerced us, in a friendly and enthusiastic way, to run it again. We figured that it would be another group of 8 or 9 and didn't realize that our friends were recruiting their friends to come out as well. The second CD 100 turned out to have more than double the riders of the first one.
At that point we realized two things. The first was that there was interest in a road event here on the Sunshine Coast that extended beyond our little group of friends. The second was that if we were going to open this ride up to others, we'd need a lot more help. So we reached out to the Sunshine Coast Cycling Club in Sechelt and Spin Cycles in Gibsons. They were both immediately enthusiastic and jumped on board. Because of their help, we were able to offer aid stations and a few other perks last year. The ridership increased, doubling yet again, a lot fun was had by the riders and new friendships were forged.
The little group ride amongst friends has grown into a real event, one that is drawing riders from not just here on the Sunshine Coast, but throughout the Lower Mainland. Because of the generous help of the club, we'll have three different courses this year, with an aid station at the turnaround point of each one. And thanks to Spin Cycles, we'll have full and highly competent mechanical support.
That's pretty amazing for an affordable event that is just trying to break even. And it's all happening because of the volunteer work of a great bike shop, bike club and a few of our friends. Thanks to all those helping, and especially to all those who have signed up for the Grind or are yet to. I look forward to seeing you there.